Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/641/10385
Campaign defeats BNP in Stroud
The far-right, racist British National Party (BNP) has retreated from its plans to set up a national propaganda HQ (media centre) in Stroud.
Just a few hours before an anti-BNP meeting of 150 people was due to take place the BNP sent out a press release blaming the Socialist Party for the decision. The packed meeting welcomed the news but stressed the need for vigilance in case it tries to raise its head in the area again.
In just two weeks Gloucestershire Socialist Party had organised local anger into a successful campaign. Coverage went out on TV screens across the south west and on the front page of the local paper. Strangers have been coming up to Socialist Party members to thank them for their efforts.
The campaign is backed by the Gloucester and District Trades Council and has constantly recognised the need to organise against the vicious Con-Dem government cuts because they will create conditions where the racism and division of the BNP could fester.
The former Labour MP, seen by many as a genuine local campaigner, also spoke against the cuts. But others explained that the actions of Labour-controlled councils speak louder than words, like Rotherham which has just announced £11 million cuts.
Services are being cut and privatised and establishment politicians and the media use immigrants as scapegoats for the attacks on jobs and services.
This gives some respectability to the obscene ideas of the BNP. It is left to socialists to explain that when virtually no council housing is being built, when private funding sucks the life blood out of the NHS and education, then pressure builds on underfunded public services.
BNP supports cuts
In the absence of political representation for the working class, the BNP can pose as a party for British workers. Yet their councillors support cuts and privatisation. In Rotherham their councillor advocated sacking a quarter of all council staff saying no one would notice!
Many at the meeting in Stroud signed up for the anti-cuts as well as the anti-racist campaign.
What we really need are trade unionists, anti-cuts campaigners, anti-racists, socialists and others to come together as a step to undercutting support for the BNP by developing a working class political alternative.
Chris Moore Gloucestershire Socialist Party
In The Socialist 6 October 2010:
Defend Child Benefits
Socialist Party editorial
Socialist Party workplace news
Health and Safety
Europe: fighting the cuts
International socialist analysis
Socialist Party review